Playing Tag: Tasteful graffiti isn't an oxymoron, readers say

Don Erickson

NEWS REAL, JUNE 26, 2008

There, But For The Grace...

Raymond has better ideas for his quilts: I read with interest Kristen Hinman's story about Don Erickson, "Artless in St. Louis." Just last week I narrowly escaped his clutches. He gave me the "opportunity" to mount a one-man retrospective of my quilts in his gallery/warehouse on Olive; I just needed to pay the $425 rent. The place was filthy, and I would have had to clean before I brought any of my quilts in the place. I was expected to clean, but I couldn't see paying him $425 for the privilege. I was also expected to pay for a DJ (whom I had never heard of) and to pay for the refreshments for the artist reception (which I understand is common). Somehow, I wasn't convinced this was going to go well. I spoke with a woman who'd had dealings with him before. She warned me away from him. I think I'll find a better venue for my quilts and mount my retrospective on my terms!
Raymond K. Houston, St. Louis


Let Them Paint Murals

And oh, what a colorful world it will be: The best way to combat illegal graffiti is to commission real graffiti artists to paint murals. ["Got ID For That Paint?," Kathleen McLaughlin.] I know it sounds backward to fight vandalism with graffiti but it works. I live in LA and we have plenty of legal murals done by graffiti artists, and you know what, I haven't seen one yet that has "tags," "throwies" or any other vandalism on them. There is a certain respect in the graffiti community about going over an artist that is better than you. If people can make art legally, then they don't have to rush the work, which in turn means a better finished product. Besides, the world needs more color. I'm tired of seeing bland gray and beige walls. Life is like TV, it is better in color. Besides, graffiti is a true free expression, uncensored and raw. People are scared because they don't understand it. Stop the fear.
Zach from LA, via the Internet

Long live creativity: When the City of St. Louis gave taggers free rein to paint the two-mile floodwall south of the Arch, one of the largest works of art in town, it showed graffiti artists that their creativity was viable and accepted. Now to slap the hands and stifle the creativity of street artists is laughable.
Michael from St. Louis, via the Internet

Love that floodwall art: They should host events like the one they used to have at the floodwall downtown where artists can show their work in an open environment without being prosecuted. This won't stop the graffiti downtown, but it might curb some of it. Or just make it legal in East St. Louis.
Josey from St. Louis, via the Internet

CAFÉ, MAY 29, 2008

A Trekkie's Salute

Nice work, Ian: I have been enjoying Ian Froeb's restaurant reviews, like "Magnum Pi," which was well written and full of information (except none on smoking or non). He also exceeded the norm by including a reference to Star Trek in a pizza review. Well done! Live long and prosper, Ian!
Mary Garrett, St. Peters

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